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Kiteboarder Shark Fatality In New Caledonia

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Kiteboarder Shark Fatality In New Caledonia

Postby RickI » Fri May 27, 2011 2:00 pm


RIP Nathan, I wish family and friends what comfort they might find at this horrific time.

"The unthinkable happened Saturday morning. Natan, 15, died at sea, in the process of Kendec, off Koumac attacked by a shark. The teenager was kitesurfing.

It was the first day of vacation in May Saturday morning, Nathan, accompanied by his father, a second adult and two companions, goes fishing in the pass of Kendec, not far from Koumac. It is also a popular place for diving and hiking in palm-masquetuba around the island Kendec. Dematinée end, the three teenagers take advantage of trade winds on their kiteboards. Around 11 am, Nathan fell in the water. He is recovering his sail when the shark suddenly attacked in the thigh.

The teenager has time to shout his relatives that he was faitmordre before falling unconscious. He was soon back on board. The boat drove ashore. Nathan was taken to hospital Koumac. It was already too late for this boy who loved sailing.

"It's awful. There are no words. "

Passionate. Koumac A, relatives of the family and the people are in shock. "It's awful. There are no words, loose Duraisin Armande, the first assistant. The family is known Koumac is a small village. Dad is a high school teacher and mother a teacher. It is a family very involved in the village. "A family who shared a love of sport. The sisters participated in the provincial competition Natan jumping when the terrible news came Saturday. The teenager had him a passion for sailing. With his crew, he had shown during the finals of the Northern Province of young sailors Trophy last year. He also starred in a freestyle race figures in the Open Cup Pacific in Noumea in 2008. And when his dad was the raid Kone, Natan attacked the mini-raid.

Alert. Tragedy lamina Koumac has faitmettre posters at the port to inform the terrible accident and prohibit swimming. PC Rescue at sea has also placed a warning to vessels cruising in the area.

According to initial findings, the teenager was attacked by a large shark. The main bite to his left leg would be more than 30 cm, running from mid-thigh to mid-calf. The prosecution has requested a review by the medical examiner pout try to know what shark attacked the boy. "If the jaw is larger than 30 cm, it reduces the number of attackers," says Philippe Tirard, shark specialist, who thinks in this case three sharks: the tiger shark, hammerhead shark and white shark . He describes the attack of "unusual" because of the season and the activity practiced by Natan, a kite is moving "quickly and over long distances." And the inhabitants of Koumac not remember any attack of such violence in their waters."
Continued at:

There have reportedly been 48 shark attacks nine of which were fatal around this rough 225 sq. mile island since 1958.


They describe factors such as breeding activity, (supposed to occur in March) and runoff of turbid water into the lagoon from excessive rain fall as contributing to attacks. They claim 58 % of the attacks were on diving spearfishermen. This differs from "normal" attack characteristics in other parts of the world where attacks on surfers and to a lesser degree swimmers are far more prevalent than on divers. Close proximity to a deep water channel through the reef to the lagoon may also have been a factor. The attack was reportedly at 11 am.

They say Nathan was body dragging to recover his board off this small island bordered by deepwater water channels. He yelled a warning to his father and friends after he was attacked. A 2 to 2 1/2 m long tiger shark may have made the attack. Sadly, there have been other fatal attacks caused by sharks hitting the victims legs and severing the femoral artery. Death through blood loss can occur very rapidly with the cutting of this major artery, possibly as fast as in 15 minutes. Immediate and correct response may be the only thing that might avoid this outcome. Take a first aid/CPR course. It is possible to suffer bites in this area and not cut this vital artery however on occasion that is what happens. It is possible sharks attack this area to disable prey's ability to move out of the area. Almost all of the rare shark attacks reported to date on kiters have happened while kiter was in the water as opposed to on plane. This is the second fatal shark attack worldwide involving a kiteboarder that I have heard about following Steve Schafer's tragic accident last year.

More information about the launch at: ... endec.html

Île Kendec is a sandy cay bounded by deeper water and a nearby channel through the reef to the ocean to the south.

Île Kendec is an islet in the Passe de Koumac, offshore from NW New Caledonia

A view from Kendec island northward across the lagoon to Grande-Terre, the main island of New Caledonia about 4 1/2 miles away.

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